Affogato with Smoky Almond Ice Cream
Makes 1 quart; enough to serve 5
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup half and half
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons carob powder
2 tablespoons mezcal
6 egg yolks at room temperature
1/2 cup almonds
5 shots espresso
1. To make the ice cream, combine the cream, half and half, sugar, carob, and mezcal in a heavy medium saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until bubbles begin to form at the edges, and the mixture is between 180 and 190 degrees.
2. Put the egg yolks in a medium bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the warm cream mixture and whisk until well blended. Repeat five more times, until 1 1/2 cups of the cream mixture have been added and the egg yolk mixture is as warm as the remaining cream mixture.
3. Slowly pour the egg mixture into the saucepan in a steady stream while whisking constantly. Cook over low heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Press plastic wrap onto the surface and refrigerate for 3 to 12 hours.
4. In a heavy medium skillet, cook the almonds over medium heat, shaking often, until fragrant and slightly brown, about 5 minutes. Let cool completely, then coarsely chop.
5. Freeze the cream mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions, adding the almonds almost at the end of the churning time. Transfer to a container, cover, and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours. The ice cream can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.
6. To assemble the affogatos, divide the ice cream evenly among 5 cups or bowls and pour a shot of espresso over each. Serve immediately.
-- "The Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee," (Ten Speed, 229 pages, $24.99)